Forty different people wrote the Scriptures. Forty is a number composed of five (symbolizing grace) times 8 (symbolizing a new beginning). It is therefore only by God's grace and love that man will someday be given a chance for a new beginning, as promised in the Word of God.
Appearances of the number eight
The New Testament was penned by only eight men (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, James, Peter, Jude, Paul).
Abdon (in the East) was a Judge of Israel who served 8 years (Judges 12:13 - 14).
The most joyous Feast period of the year is the eight day period of the Fall Feast of Tabernacles followed immediately afterward by the Last Great Day.
Abraham, the father of the faithful, had 8 sons total. They were Ishmael, Issac, Zimran, Jokshan, Medan, Midian, Ishbak and Shuah.
One method of timekeeping used in Israel was called a 'watch.' Watches were time periods in which guards were placed on duty. Although days were initially divided into 6 equal watch periods (Judges 7:19), by the time of the New Testament days were divided into 8 equal parts (Matthew 14:25, Mark 6:48).
First watch - Sunset to 9 p.m.
Second watch - 9 p.m. to Midnight
Third watch - Midnight to 3 a.m.
Fourth watch - 3 a.m. to Sunrise
First watch - Sunrise to 9 a.m.
Second watch - 9 a.m. to Noon
Third watch - Noon to 3 p.m.
Fourth watch - 3 p.m. to Sunset
How is the number 8 related to Jesus' resurrection?
Jesus showed himself alive EIGHT times after his resurrection from the dead. His first appearance alive was to Mary Magdalene (Mark 16:9 - 11). He then showed himself to two disciples traveling to Emmaus (Luke 24). Next, he appeared to all the disciples except Thomas (John 20:19 - 24) then a week later to all them when Thomas was present (John 20:26 - 29). According to the apostle Paul, Christ also was seen by 500 believers at one time (1Corinthians 15:4 - 7). Jesus also met his disciples at the appointed place in Galilee (Matthew 28:16 - 17) and on Galilee's shores (John 21:1 - 24). His final meeting was on the Mount of Olives, where he gave his followers instructions before ascending to heaven (Acts 1).
Additional information on the Biblical Meaning of 8
God saved eight people on the ark in order to have a new beginning for mankind after the flood. Since the meaning of four is derived from God's creation of everything, 8 (4 + 4) pictures the new creation after the flood.
Eight is the number of Jesus, whose name in the Greek adds up to 888.